Create a Coordinating Body for National Collaboration and Action

Cote d’Ivoire’s 2010-2011 post-election crisis dealt a severe blow to the public health system, reversing important gains of the previous decade and causing catastrophic damage to the infrastructure and delivery of public health services. With IANPHI support and facilitation, the directors of all seven of the government institutes and structures responsible for public health functions in Cote d’Ivoire met in 2013 to discuss options for optimal coordination of activities and use of scarce resources.

The outcome was a consensus plan to link the agencies in a pioneering “platform” for national integration and action. Envisioned as a precursor to development of an NPHI, the new Comité National de Coordination des Interventions en Santé Publique (CNCISP) – operationalized through an IANPHI-supported Secretariat – serves to coordinate and facilitate exchange among the public health structures, identify and address barriers to improved public health, prioritize interventions for efficacy and efficiency in public health response, and identify sources of support to strengthen the capacity of the component institutions.

The establishment of CNCISP is already reaping rewards. Participants from the seven component structures met in mid-2014 for an inaugural CNCISP-sponsored epidemiology training workshop, which provided an opportunity not only to offer essential training in public health practice, but also to forge important new alliances among those working in previously disconnected organizations.